Publications by authors named "Inna Shniter"

6 Publications

  • Page 1 of 1

Point of Care Ultrasound in the Diagnosis of Necrotizing Fasciitis.

Am J Emerg Med 2022 Jan 29;51:397-400. Epub 2021 Oct 29.

University of California Irvine, Department of Emergency Medicine, United States.

Background: Necrotizing fasciitis (NF) is a severe, life-threatening soft tissue infection requiring prompt diagnosis and immediate surgical debridement. Imaging, including a computed tomography (CT) scan, can often aid in the diagnosis, though it can prolong time to treatment and diagnosis. Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) is often used in the ED to identify soft tissue infections. The objective of this study is to evaluate the use of POCUS to identify NF in patients presenting to the emergency department.

Methods: We prospectively enrolled patients who presented to the emergency department (ED) with suspected soft tissue infection who received a computed tomography and/or surgical consult. POCUS images of the suspected site of infection were obtained by the emergency medicine physician and interpreted based on sonographic findings of NF. These findings were compared with CT scan or surgical impression.

Results: We enrolled 64 patients in this study. Eight were determined to be at high risk of having NF based on CT scan and/or surgical impression. All of these patients also had POCUS images interpreted as concerning for NF. Furthermore, 56 patients were classified as being low risk for having NF based on CT scan and/or surgical impression. All but one of these patients had POCUS images interpreted as not concerning for NF.

Conclusions: Our data indicates that POCUS can be used to identify NF with a high sensitivity and specificity.
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January 2022

Retrospective analysis of eFAST ultrasounds performed on trauma activations at an academic level-1 trauma center.

World J Emerg Med 2020 ;11(1):12-17

Department of Emergency Medicine, University of California, Irvine, Orange, CA 92868, USA.

Background: Point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) has become increasingly integrated into the practice of emergency medicine. A common application is the extended focused assessment with sonography in trauma (eFAST) exam. The American College of Emergency Physicians has guidelines regarding the scope of ultrasound in the emergency department and the appropriate documentation. The objective of this study was to conduct a review of performed, documented and billed eFAST ultrasounds on trauma activation patients.

Methods: This was a retrospective review of all trauma activation patients during a 10-month period at an academic level-one trauma center. A list comparing all trauma activations was cross-referenced with a list of all billed eFAST scans. Medical records were reviewed to determine whether an eFAST was indicated, performed, and appropriately documented.

Results: We found that 1,507 of 1,597 trauma patients had indications for eFAST, but 396 (27%) of these patients did not have a billed eFAST. Of these 396 patients, 87 (22%) had documentation in the provider note that an eFAST was performed but there was no separate procedure note. The remaining 309 (78%) did not have any documentation of the eFAST in the patient's chart although an eFAST was recorded and reviewed during ultrasound quality assurance.

Conclusion: A significant proportion of trauma patients had eFAST exams performed but were not documented or billed. Lack of documentation was multifactorial. Emergency ultrasound programs require appropriate reimbursement to support training, credentialing, equipment, quality assurance, and device maintenance. Our study demonstrates a significant absence of adequate documentation leading to potential revenue loss for an emergency ultrasound program.
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January 2020

A Prospective Evaluation of Point of Care Ultrasound Teaching in Switzerland.

J Med Ultrasound 2019 Apr-Jun;27(2):92-96. Epub 2019 Feb 26.

Department of Emergency Medicine, University of California Irvine, Irvine, California, USA.

Context: As the utility of point-of-care ultrasound (POCUS) continues to expand in the medical field, there is a need for effective educational methods. In Switzerland, medical education follows the European model and lasts 6 years, focusing on preclinical training during the first 2 years. No previous studies have evaluated the optimal time for teaching ultrasound in European medical education.

Aims: The aim of this study is to provide ultrasound training to medical students in Switzerland at varying times during their clinical training to determine if the level of training plays a role in their ability to comprehend and to apply basic POCUS skills.

Methods: We performed an observational study utilizing a convenience sample of Swiss medical students between July 11, 2016 and August 6, 2016. They were taught a 2-day POCUS course by five American-trained 1-year medical students. Following this course, students were evaluated with written and clinical examination.

Results: 100 Swiss medical students were enrolled in the study. A total of 59 of these students were early clinical students, and 41 students were late clinical students. A two-tailed -test was performed and demonstrated that the late clinical students performed better than the early clinical students on the written assessment; however, no difference was found in clinical skill.

Conclusion: Our data suggest that Swiss medical students can learn and perform POCUS after a 2-day instructional taught by trained 1-year American medical students. No difference was found between students in early clinical training and late clinical training for the ability to perform POCUS.
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February 2019

Point-of-Care Ultrasonography in the Diagnosis of Retinal Detachment, Vitreous Hemorrhage, and Vitreous Detachment in the Emergency Department.

JAMA Netw Open 2019 04 5;2(4):e192162. Epub 2019 Apr 5.

Department of Emergency Medicine, University of California, Irvine.

Importance: Ocular symptoms represent approximately 2% to 3% of all emergency department (ED) visits. These disease processes may progress to permanent vision loss if not diagnosed and treated quickly. Use of ocular point-of-care ultrasonography (POCUS) may be effective for early and accurate detection of ocular disease.

Objective: To perform a large-scale, multicenter study to determine the utility of POCUS for diagnosing retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, and vitreous detachment in the ED.

Design, Setting, And Participants: A prospective diagnostic study was conducted at 2 academic EDs and 2 county hospital EDs from February 3, 2016, to April 30, 2018. Patients who were eligible for inclusion were older than 18 years; were English- or Spanish-speaking; presented to the ED with ocular symptoms with concern for retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, or vitreous detachment; and underwent an ophthalmologic consultation that included POCUS. Patients with ocular trauma or suspicion for globe rupture were excluded. The accuracy of the ultrasonographic diagnosis was compared with the criterion standard of the final diagnosis of an ophthalmologist who was masked to the POCUS findings. Seventy-five unique emergency medicine attending physicians, resident physicians, and physician assistants performed ocular ultrasonography.

Exposure: Point-of-care ultrasonography performed by an emergency medicine attending physician, resident physician, or physician assistant.

Main Outcomes And Measures: Sensitivity and specificity of POCUS in identifying retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, and vitreous detachment in patients presenting to the ED with ocular symptoms.

Results: Two hundred twenty-five patients were enrolled. Of these, the mean age was 51 years (range, 18-91 years) and 135 (60.0%) were men; ophthalmologists diagnosed 47 (20.8%) with retinal detachment, 54 (24.0%) with vitreous hemorrhage, and 34 (15.1%) with vitreous detachment. Point-of-care ultrasonography had an overall sensitivity of 96.9% (95% CI, 80.6%-99.6%) and specificity of 88.1% (95% CI, 81.8%-92.4%) for diagnosis of retinal detachment. For diagnosis of vitreous hemorrhage, the sensitivity of POCUS was 81.9% (95% CI, 63.0%-92.4%) and specificity was 82.3% (95% CI, 75.4%-87.5%). For vitreous detachment, the sensitivity was 42.5% (95% CI, 24.7%-62.4%) and specificity was 96.0% (95% CI, 91.2%-98.2%).

Conclusions And Relevance: These findings suggest that emergency medicine practitioners can use POCUS to accurately identify retinal detachment, vitreous hemorrhage, and vitreous detachment. Point-of-care ultrasonography is not intended to replace the role of the ophthalmologist for definitive diagnosis of these conditions, but it may serve as an adjunct to help emergency medicine practitioners improve care for patients with ocular symptoms.
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April 2019

Assessment of clinical dehydration using point of care ultrasound for pediatric patients in rural Panama.

World J Emerg Med 2019 ;10(1):46-50

Department of Emergency Medicine, University of California Irvine, Orange, CA 92868, USA.

Background: Dehydration and its associated symptoms are among the most common chief complaints of children in rural Panama. Previous studies have shown that intravascular volume correlates to the ratio of the diameters of the inferior vena cava (IVC) to the aorta (Ao). Our study aims to determine if medical students can detect pediatric dehydration using ultrasound on patients in rural Panama.

Methods: This was a prospective, observational study conducted in the Bocas del Toro region of rural Panama. Children between the ages of 1 to 15 years presenting with diarrhea, vomiting, or parasitic infection were enrolled in the study. Ultrasound measurements of the diameters of the IVC and abdominal aorta were taken to assess for dehydration.

Results: A total of 59 patients were enrolled in this study. Twenty-four patients were clinically diagnosed with dehydration and 35 were classified to have normal hydration status. Of the 24 patients with dehydration, half (=12) of these patients had an IVC/Ao ratio below the American threshold of 0.8. Of the remaining asymptomatic subjects, about half (=18) of these subjects also had an IVC/Ao ratio below the American threshold of 0.8.

Conclusion: Our study did not support previous literature showing that the IVC/Ao ratio is lower in children with dehydration. It is possible that the American standard for evaluating clinical dehydration is not compatible with the rural pediatric populations of Panama.
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January 2019

Tricuspid annular plane of systolic excursion to prognosticate acute pulmonary symptomatic embolism (TAPSEPAPSE study).

J Ultrasound Med 2019 Mar 4;38(3):695-702. Epub 2018 Sep 4.

Department of Emergency Medicine, University of California, Irvine, Orange, California, USA.

Introduction: The imaging standard for evaluation of acute pulmonary embolism (PE) includes a computed tomography pulmonary angiogram. Ultrasonography has shown promise in obtaining the tricuspid annular plane systolic excursion (TAPSE) measurements, which may be of clinical importance in patients with acute PE. The objective of this study is to evaluate the diagnostic capability of TAPSE measurements for patients with suspicion for acute PE.

Methods: We prospectively enrolled patients who came to the emergency department with suspicion of acute PE. Each patient underwent a point-of-care sonogram where a TAPSE measurement was obtained, followed by computed tomography pulmonary angiogram. Based on the computed tomography pulmonary angiogram findings, patients were grouped into 3 categories: no acute PE, clinically insignificant acute PE, or clinically significant acute PE.

Results: We enrolled 87 patients in this study. Twenty-three (26.4%) of these patients were diagnosed with PE. Of patients with PE, 15 (65%) were found to have a clinically significant acute PE. Analysis of mean TAPSE measurements between patients with clinically significant acute PE and those with insignificant or no PE was 15.2 mm and 22.7 mm, respectively (P ≤ .0001). Following receiver operating characteristic curve analysis, optimum TAPSE measurement to identify clinically significant acute PE is 18.2 mm. A cutoff TAPSE measurement of 15.2 mm shows a sensitivity of 53.3% (95% confidence interval, 26.7%-80%) and a specificity of 100% (95% confidence interval, 100%-100%) for the diagnosis of a clinically significant PE.

Conclusions: Our data suggest that TAPSE measurements less than 15.2 mm have a high specificity for identifying clinically significant acute PE.
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March 2019